A BRITISH man has been arrested for allegedly defrauding more than 25 compatriots who had paid him to process their Spanish residency permits, reported National Police.
The suspect, aged 33, ran a legal advice (asesoría) office in Molina de Segura in Murcia region, although victims have been detected in several provinces, including Alicante, according to a spokesman for the force.
He was aided by a fellow Briton, who had been in the country for many years and gained the trust of the victims but so far has not been tracked down by the police.
The investigation began when a British couple went to the immigration office in Murcia saying they had been waiting several months for their foreigner identification cards (TIE), the police spokesman explained. They said they had paid a British man, who worked at an ‘asesoría’ in Molina de Segura, to handle the application, and he had assured them their cards were waiting at the immigration office for them to collect.
Once the immigration office staff had confirmed that no application from the couple had been processed, the National Police launched an investigation.
Officers discovered that a multitude of other UK nationals had asked the same office to process their residency permits, as well as other procedures, such as changing their UK driving licence for a Spanish one or taking out medical insurance, in some cases paying inflated prices for these services.